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Brazil held to 1-1 draw by Switzerland in opening match

© Joe Klamar, AFP | Switzerland's midfielder Granit Xhaka (left), Brazil's forward Neymar (centre) and Switzerland's defender Stephan Lichtsteiner (right), on June 17, 2018

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2018-06-18

Brazil joined the list of big teams struggling to win their opening matches at the World Cup in Russia.

The five-time champions were held to a 1-1 draw by Switzerland on Sunday, a few hours after four-time champion Germany was beaten by Mexico 1-0.

Philippe Coutinho gave Brazil the lead in the 20th minute with a volley that bounced in off the right post. Steven Zuber then headed in the equalizer in the 50th. Mexican referee Cesar Ramos dismissed complaints that Zuber had shoved defender Miranda before getting to the corner from Xherdan Shaqiri.

“I was pushed out of the way. There is video of what happened and the referee could have seen it. But it didn’t happen,” Miranda said. “We got a draw but this is only the beginning for us. We knew this game wasn’t going to be easy.”

Ramos also ignored a penalty claim late in the second half when Gabriel Jesus was wrestled to the ground by Switzerland defender Manuel Akanji.

Switzerland’s players dominated the midfield for long spells against a Brazil team that lost its previous World Cup match 7-1 to Germany in the 2014 semifinals.

Since taking charge in 2016, however, Brazil coach Tite has only lost once in 22 games.

Besides Brazil and Germany, Argentina was held to a 1-1 draw by Iceland on Saturday and Spain and Portugal played to a 3-3 draw on Friday.

(AP)

Date created : 2018-06-17

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